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Agriculture Department Pulls an End Run to Seal Animal ID Records

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First, The Agriculture Department pressed for statutory closure of records of its National Animal Identification System, urging a provision in the massive farm appropriations bill that would keep secret the names and addresses of feedlot operators. When that section was lsubsequently pulled at the urging of open government advocates, the department called an end run. It has adopted a new regulation certifying those records under the Privacy Act, mandating they be withheld from the public. Deadline for comment is May 30. (5-8/08)